The United States collapsed long before Caroline Mathers was born. She's strong, mature beyond her age, but she knows nothing of cell phones, computers, or even hot showers—they're remnants of history, wistful stories told around campfires. Life as a dutiful scout has her patrolling the surrounding forests, hiding, observing, and warning the families of her tiny outpost when danger is near. They survive by sticking together. It's a quiet existence...
...until the day Caroline hears the terrifying beat of distant drums echoing throughout their peaceful valley. An army is marching. War is coming, and nothing less than the power of the Kinders could save her people now.
But the Kinders are just legends, ghosts from long ago...aren't they?
Most post-apocalypse stories I read are set either during the crisis itself, or in the distorted society that emerged from the ashes centuries later. What's rarer is to see one set some time after the collapse, but still close enough that things are still unstable. And that's where Ernie Lindsey's War Child series begins. I love this look at a society where three fundamental forces are in seemingly perfect balance, but you can't decide where to pin your allegiances. To the local warlords who are trying to establish order? The secret societies still championing the beliefs that caused the collapse in the first place? Or the young idealists who don't understand any of that, and just want a chance to build lives for themselves without having to choose sides? No matter how you slice it, something has got to change. – Jefferson Smith
"This impressive novel [is a] coming-of-age action-adventure dominated by a young girl just coming into her powers. A fine, durable, inaugural volume brimming with imagination and sparkling, inventive characters."– Publishers Weekly
"Caroline [is a] strong yet vulnerable heroine who isn't afraid to do what must be done."– Rysa Walker – author of Timebound and Grand Prize winner of the 2013 Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award
"Just what do you say to convey the breathless pace, the suspense and the never ending tension that begins in the very first sentence and never lets go, even at the very end?"– Amazon Reviewer Jan Jacobs
Don't ask me how or why the world ended, because I can't tell you. The only connections we have to the past are stories told by the Elders; at night, when the campfires are roaring, they fascinate the children with tall tales that seem too incredible to be real.
They talk about things called airplanes and computers, about fresh food that was kept cold in big boxes, cars and how people actually drove them—they didn't even need strong horses to pull them from one place to the next.
The last remnants of the roads they used—those dark, crumbling paths cutting through the Appalachian Mountains—are paths to freedom that go somewhere far, far from here.
They make a long journey easier, but if you're smart, you stay away. They're too open, too exposed. Roving bands of dangerous Republicons hide in the hills, waiting on travelers too tired, or too ignorant, to know that they've crossed into the PRV.
The People's Republic of Virginia.
That's where I live, if you could call it living. They tell us that if you can survive here, you can survive anywhere.
And yet, I may never get the chance to find out if that's true, because first, war is coming.